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A liquid coolant leak triggered thermal runaway in battery cells, which began a hearth on the 300MW/450MWh Victorian Large Battery in Australia final July.

A technical report into findings of specialist investigators has been launched to the general public, written by consultants at Fisher Engineering and the Energy Security Response Group (ESRG). The hearth occurred because the system was below building and destroyed two of the 212 Tesla Megapack battery energy storage system (BESS) units being put in.

After the scenario was introduced below management and authorities cleared the location to renew building and pre-commissioning testing actions in September, developer Neoen and Tesla brought the Victorian Big Battery online in December, since when it has been taking part within the Nationwide Electrical energy Market (NEM).

The technical report was offered to stakeholders in January this yr and now made public. It notes that the incident is the primary hearth to have an effect on Tesla Megapacks. The US-headquartered EV, {solar} and BESS firm deployed around 4GWh of energy storage in total worldwide throughout 2021. It has simply introduced an formidable goal for its deployments this decade, claiming it could reach 1,500GWh of annual installations by 2030.

A single pre-manufactured 3MWh Megapack unit caught hearth on 30 July 2021, spreading to a neighbouring Megapack. The unfold stopped there and the fireplace burned itself out over a six hour interval. This was in step with steering provided by the producer to emergency responders to let burning Megapacks devour themselves whereas monitoring different potential exposures at a protected distance.

It was a ‘protected failure,’ with no accidents reported to web site personnel, first responders or most of the people and the multi-team investigation commenced nearly instantly, on 3 August.

The investigation largely confirmed what was discovered by Energy Protected Victoria, the state’s regulatory physique, because it cleared the project to resume testing and commissioning, however added extra particulars as they turned identified.

Website personnel observed smoke emanating from a Megapack at round 10am on the day in query, and as soon as emergency crews arrived, a fringe was established across the unit, and water was utilized to chill it. Hearth then unfold to the adjoining Megapack, which was about 15cm away.

Fisher and ESRG stated {that a} leak throughout the first Megapack’s liquid cooling system triggered arcing throughout the battery modules. Warmth created then took battery cells into thermal runaway.

Tesla has already taken steps to forestall repeat incident

It is very important observe that a few of the circumstances which triggered the fireplace are unlikely to be repeated when the system is in regular operation – because the unit was present process testing, it had been manually disconnected from a few of the normal monitoring, management and knowledge assortment that it will be hooked as much as.

Excessive wind circumstances additionally contributed to the fireplace’s propagation, regardless of the items being correctly spaced aside as per necessities. The report stated UL 9540A burn testing solely accounts for wind speeds as much as about 12mph, whereas that day the world skilled wind speeds of as much as 35mph.

Tesla has already addressed most of the components which led to the incident, together with improved inspection procedures for coolant programs and including extra alarms to the Megapacks telemetry.

In an interview with this web site just a few months in the past, Paul Rogers of ESRG, one of many firm’s principals and a former firefighter that elected to change into a battery storage security material knowledgeable, stated that battery fires are prone to be extraordinarily uncommon occasions, however that each potential care must be taken to deal with both the risk and what to do in the event they do happen, as they are often extraordinarily severe in any other case.

The discharge of the technical findings comes as energy firm AES Company is endeavor an investigation of its personal right into a fire at a 10MW battery storage facility in Arizona, US.

The report into the Victorian Large Battery incident can be found here.



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UN calls for ‘global coalition on battery storage’

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UN calls for ‘global coalition on battery storage’


As the worldwide local weather disaster unfolds, António Guterres, secretary-general of the UN, has highlighted the essential position battery storage can play in tackling it.

Guterres issued a stark warning yesterday in regards to the “dismal litany of humanity’s failure to sort out local weather disruption” in a speech during which he set out “5 crucial actions to jumpstart the renewable energy transition”.

Talking on the launch of the World Meteorological Organisation’s State of the Global Climate 2021 Report, Guterres described the worldwide energy system as “damaged” and “bringing us ever nearer to local weather disaster”. He known as on the world to “finish fossil gas air pollution and speed up the renewable energy transition, earlier than we incinerate our solely dwelling”.

Guterres proposed 5 crucial actions to jump-start the renewable energy transition. The primary of those was treating renewable applied sciences corresponding to battery energy storage methods (BESS) as “important and freely-available international public items” by “eradicating obstacles to data sharing and technological switch”, together with mental property constraints.

“Storing renewable electrical energy is commonly cited as the best barrier to the clear energy transition,” mentioned Guterres as he known as for a world coalition on battery storage to fast-track innovation and deployment.

The speech was delivered on the identical day the European Union revealed its draft proposal for RePower EU, its plan to scale back after which finish dependence on fossil fuels imported from Russia. The plan contains some point out of energy storage, however has stopped far short of the coherent strategy and deployment targets many had hoped for.

To learn the total model of this story, go to PV Tech.



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Urban Electric and Pine Gate sign MOU for 4.5GWh of zinc batteries

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City Electric Energy has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with developer Pine Gate Renewables to produce the latter as much as 4,550MWh of its zinc batteries over the subsequent 5 years.

Pine Gate may have preferential phrases for buying City Electric’s patented zinc alkaline batteries over the subsequent 5 years for its co-located and standalone storage initiatives. Pine Gate has over 1GW of working {solar} property within the US and a 16GW growth pipeline.

City Electric provides its batteries underneath the Ohm label to residential and business & industrial (C&I) prospects but in addition has a utility-scale providing known as Zeus. The zinc alkaline batteries have a number of benefits over lithium-ion, together with decrease integration prices, extra plentiful provide of core supplies, a much less problematic provide chain and decrease hearth danger, the corporate stated.

An organization brochure says the Zeus battery energy storage system (BESS) has an influence vary of 250-1000kW and a length of 2-24+ hours. Utilizing the instance of a five-hour, 760kw/3,800kWh system, it says the round-trip effectivity can be 86% – decrease than lithium-ion which is usually within the excessive 90s.

Ann Marie Augustus, City Electric Energy’s VP operations, stated: “As we section out fossil fuels and add distributed renewables, demand will solely develop for changing outdated battery expertise with cost-effective energy storage that’s safer, longer-lasting, and extra environmentally pleasant. We provide non-toxic, utility-scale battery energy storage with no thermal runaway hearth danger, at a value and environmental footprint lower than normal lithium-ion or lead batteries.”

The deal isn’t Ashville-headquartered Pine Gate’s first use of zinc batteries. In November 2021, it selected one other zinc battery producer’s expertise, Eos Energy, for a 500kWh standalone battery energy storage system (BESS) in Utah. That contributed to Eos Energy’s strong first quarter 2022 results through which gross sales grew year-on-year by an element of 20.

Zinc battery chemistry, which marks the start line of battery expertise’s historical past, is rising in recognition as a substitute for lithium-ion. An organization associated to the US’ largest homebuilder D R Horton lately chose Salient Energy’s zinc-ion technology for installation in up to 200,000 homes citing issues with lithium-ion.

The expertise has discovered a candy in being a backup energy for information centres, wrote Dr Josef Daniel-Ivad from the the Zinc Battery Initiative which represents corporations together with City Electric, Salient and Eos, in a guest blog for Energy-Storage.news. City Electric lately struck a deal to switch 1,000kWh of lead-acid batteries on the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC).



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Li-Cycle opens third battery recycling facility at ‘strategic’ southwest US location

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Lithium-ion battery recycler Li-Cycle has opened its third recycling facility, in Arizona.

The power within the city of Gilbert, Arizona, has the capability to course of as much as 10,000 tonnes of battery manufacturing scrap and end-of-life batteries, and is the primary to make use of Li-Cycle’s proprietary expertise to straight course of full EV battery packs. Will probably be in a position to recycle the packs with out dismantling them manually, making it safer, extra sustainable and labour-efficient, the corporate mentioned.

Arizona made sense as a location due to its emergence as a key a part of the US EV provide chain, in addition to its proximity to California, whose massive EV client and energy storage market ought to present an rising provide of end-of-life batteries, Li-Cycle added. The corporate solely introduced its intention to build the Arizona plant in April 2021, making it a fast turnaround for it to enter motion.

The Gilbert ‘Spoke’ facility is strategically situated near Li-Cycle’s present battery and manufacturing scrap provide community within the Southwestern US. It’s a part of the corporate’s Hub and Spoke mannequin, with a significant Hub in Rochester, New York, anticipated to return on-line in 2023.

Spoke amenities will ship black mass – containing vital metals like lithium, cobalt and nickel – which can then be processed on the Rochester Hub, which can have the capability to course of 35,000 tonnes of fabric a yr.

A fourth Spoke facility in Alabama is ready to open within the third quarter of 2022.

The announcement comes only a week after pure sources big Glencore invested US$200 million into Li-Cycle which constructed on a US$100 million investment by Koch Strategic Platforms a few months prior. The corporate has additionally secured an off-take and provide deal in addition to a mixed US$50 million funding from LG Energy Solution and LG Chem, which it closed just a few days in the past.

The corporate’s share value at the moment sits at US$7.60, up round 10% since earlier than yesterday’s announcement, leaving it with a market cap of US$1.3 billion. It went public in a SPAC merger last year.

Its Arizona facility is the second main recycling facility to have began operations this week, with Northvolt and Hydro’s Hydrovolt facility in Norway also launching.

Elsewhere within the US, the nation’s largest single-site battery recycling facility is below development close to EV battery gigafactories in Georgia, by startup Ascend Parts, which expects to have it up and working this August. One other US recycling and sources specialist, Redwood Supplies, has mentioned it’s already receiving about 6GWh of lithium batteries for recycling each year at its facility close to Tesla’s Gigafactory One in Nevada.



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